Frequently Asked Questions about Miss USA & Miss Teen USA Pageants

Becoming A Contesant

How Do I Become A Contestant?
The Miss Texas USA® and Miss Texas Teen USA® Pageants are open to all young women who meet the eligibility requirements (found here).
Do I have to win a Preliminary Pageant to compete?
You do not need to win a preliminary title or have previous pageant experience to participate.
Do I need to have pageant experience to compete in a Miss USA or Miss Teen USA state pageant?
On the contrary! Quite often our competitors are the “girls next door” with little or no pageant experience.  Almost on an annual basis we have girls winning that have never competed with us before.  For instance, Vanessa Minnillo had never competed in a pageant before she competed and won Miss SC Teen USA.  She then went on to win Miss Teen USA and has since embarked on a remarkable career in the entertainment industry.
How Do I Sign Up?
Click HERE to Apply or click on the Apply tab at the top of this page.
Will the pageant be televised?
Right now there are no plans to televise the state pageant, however the pageant shows will be streaming live online at PageantVision.com.

Judging & Criteria

How is the Pageant judged?
Each contestant will be judged in three areas of competition: Interview, Swimsuit, & Evening Gown.  Judging criteria includes character, poise, confidence, and personality.

For more detailed information please visit our Judging Criteria page.

Is there a talent portion of the competition?
No, there is no performing talent competition. There are three equally scored categories, including Interview, Swimsuit, & Evening Gown.
Are there any height or weight requirements to compete in the pageant?
Absolutely not! Whether you’re 4 feet tall or 7 feet tall, it doesn’t matter. In the swimsuit portion of the competition, the judges will be looking for physical fitness, which includes a healthy and fit body. There’s usually a wide range of body styles and types for the Top 15 Finalists each year. We’re looking for outgoing, intelligent, confident, and attractive young women who are excited to represent the state of Texas.
Am I too old or too young to enter the pageant?
Never at any time are the judges directed to consider age when choosing a state winner. Age is only a factor in determining which division you will compete.
How many contestants compete in the state pageant?
The number of contestants vary from year to year.  However, typically we have between 90-120 contestants in each division.


How does Sponsorship work?
Collecting sponsorship is very important. It takes a time commitment on your part. You start with a list of potential sponsors such as friends and family members and their employers, etc. Plan your strategy, and make a plan to succeed! Schedule appointments to collect your sponsorships. When approaching potential sponsors, explain your goals, your desire to improve yourself by participating in the Miss Texas USA pageant, the charities you believe in and the scholarship opportunities. Let them know what your experience will entail. This will be extremely beneficial in developing your communication skills. This is an essential characteristic to have if you’re going to be the next Miss Texas USA or Miss Texas Teen USA.

Our goal is for contestants to collect 100% of the sponsorship fee. This is a tax-deductible advertising expense for those businesses that assist you with sponsorship. If you work hard on collecting sponsorship, it is possible that you will not incur any expenses out of pocket. In addition, hardworking contestants receive material item sponsorships, such as a dress, tanning, a haircut, etc.

What if I raise more sponsorship money than the required sponsorship fee?
If you raise more money than required for your entry fee, you may use the extra funds to cover any additional expenses associated with the pageant.  Your overage may be used to purchase a Full Page ad in the program book, or may go to purchasing your wardrobe, or may just give you a little extra spending money.
What should I do if a sponsor gives me cash for my sponsorship fee?
If you receive cash contributions for your sponsorship fee, you may put that money into a money order or send a personal check. Please DO NOT send cash through the mail at any time.
What if I simply cannot afford to compete?
We explain how to obtain sponsorships and offer many fundraising ideas to cover competition costs—including entry fee and wardrobe. Your family, friends and local business leaders will be supportive, when you share your goals with them.

Pageant Preparation

Do I need a pageant coach to help me prepare?
Even though some contestants wish to seek expert advice, we do not see this reflected in the overall outcome of the pageant. Focus on being your “personal best!”
Do I need to shop the pageant sponsors when preparing for competition?
No.  However, we do our best to seek out the best of the best when it comes to our sponsors.  We provide our sponsor information to you as only as a resource. We NEVER allow our sponsors to discuss with us who their clients are.
Do I have to spend a fortune on outfits?
Not at all! You do not need to spend a fortune on swimwear, an interview outfit, or an evening gown. It is most important to find outfits that you will feel confident in and that best suit you and your personality. The personal choice of gowns have spanned from simple, to elegant, to hand beaded. However, it is never the gown that the judges are scoring; it’s the young women wearing it.
Do I need a different gown for finals than the one I wear for Preliminaries?
No. We highly recommend wearing the same gown for both preliminaries and finals. Nearly all contestants at the state pageant wear the same gown for both.
What is the Opening Number outfit for?
At the beginning of the show for the pageant, each contestant will be introduced to the audience during an upbeat, choreographed introduction number (contestant will not sing, and the choreographed moves are very easy – you do not need to be a dancer). The Opening Number outfit will coincide with our theme each year.
What type of photo should I use for my official state pageant photo in the program book?
One, 5×7, color print of your favorite head shot or head & shoulder shot (without hat or crown) vertically printed is required.   This should be professional quality print and not from a home ink jet or laser printer.

In addition to the print, please submit your headshot in jpg format.  It must be at a resolution of at least 300 dpi. This should be emailed to our office (gail@misstexasusa.com) no later than 6 weeks prior to the pageant.

Pageant Weekend

When will the semi-finalists be named?
The semi-finalists in the pageant will be named during the first portion of the pageant finals on the last day of the pageant weekend. No one will know who the semi-finalists are until that moment in the pageant finals show.
If I am not named as a semi-finalist, will I still be in the pageant finals?
Yes.  The non-finalists will still participate on stage throughout the evening.
Do I need to pay for my meals during pageant weekend?
No. All of your meals throughout the state pageant weekend are provided by the state pageant. Although all of your meals are provided, we do recommend that you are prepared for any additional snacks that you may want to have handy. If you have any special dietary requirements, please plan ahead and bring those foods/drinks with you.
Do I need to pay for my hotel room during pageant weekend?
No. Your hotel room during the pageant is provided for you by the state pageant. If you choose to arrive the night before or stay the night after the pageant, your room for those nights would be at your own expense.
How many other contestants will I room with at the hotel?
Each contestant is paired with one other contestant in order to share each hotel room. Each room will have two beds, so each contestant will have their own bed. In order to be respectful to the contestant with whom you are sharing the room, only the two of you are allowed in your hotel room (no family or friends allowed at any time).
Will I have time to visit with my family, friends, and out of town guests during pageant weekend?
Once you check in, contestants will have a packed schedule of activities, interviews, rehearsals, and shows. We recommend you plan on arriving early or staying an extra day in the host city to enjoy the experience with your guests. Time permitting, we will make every effort to include designated family meet and greet opportunities.
If my family or friends want to attend the pageant, where do they stay?
They may stay in the pageant’s “Host Hotel.” Friends and Family rates normally apply.
What should my family and friends wear to the pageant?
We recommend anything from business casual to formalwear for the pageant preliminaries and pageant finals.
How do my family and friends get tickets to attend the pageant?
Ticket information will be listed on the Tickets page closer to the date of the pageant.

General Questions

When will the Miss USA & Miss Teen USA pageants be televised?
The Miss USA national pageant is typically televised in the Spring or Summer of each year.  The Miss Teen USA national pageant, is typically produced in July/August of each year, but is not always televised.  In 2008, the Miss Teen USA pageant began web-casting live from the Atlantis Resort in the Bahamas.
Do only the winners get selected for various modeling/talent opportunities and career benefits?
Not true! On a regular basis we receive requests from modeling agencies and casting companies looking for young ladies for particular opportunities.  We often recommend previous contestants to fill the requests.
If I win, will it interfere with school?
We make school the number one priority! Our program only encourages your success! Almost all of your appearances, celebrity events, and charity work will take place during the weekend and will be scheduled in advance.